NoteFull's Student of the Month for November 2015 back to top
[Vandana is pictured above]
Welcome back to our Success Stories page! It's always a very exciting time of the month for our team here at NoteFull because we get to inspire our students just like you to keep going and not give up. You may have taken the test once, three times, or even 10+ times with the same scores.
Don't worry, don't give up, believe in yourself.
You WILL get the scores you need, but it might just take a little more time than you'd like. This month, we want to present another student who didn't give up and finally achieved her dream scores after 11 months of hard work. Her name is Vandana Chowdhary, a physical therapist from India.
The start to Vandana's TOEFL journey
The TOEFL is a test and it requires certain skills that are needed to overcome the tricks and confusion. Even for us at NoteFull, we had to experiment and figure out the best possible way for us, native speakers, to get a perfect score. Vandana had the same experience. As someone with a strong background in English, she thought she would be able to pass the first time.
That's perfectly normal to think that way.
Most of you are really good at English and even speak really well as you go throughout your day interacting with native speakers. It's not easy to go to the TOEFL and then be let down when you receive your scores. Here's how she felt about it:
"Last year when I gave my first exam I was very hopeful that I will be able to get 26 in Speaking and 63 composite in other sections in just 1 or 2 attempts as my English was average. But I was wrong as every time I scored 23 or 24 in speaking which made me hopeless and I thought of giving up on the TOEFL exam."
She started off with these scores:
Reading: 19; Listening: 18; Speaking: 23; Writing 25
This was not what she was hoping for. Fortunately for Vandana, she didn't give up. She had a dream to come to the U.S. to become a physical therapist and that was what kept her going. She didn't let a test, even though it seems impossible, get in her way.
She studied hard, practiced with reviews, and sought out tutoring to finally achieve her goal scores:
Reading: 24; Listening: 26; Speaking: 27; Writing 28
She really, really, wanted to achieve her dream badly. Don't you?
Here's Vandana's step-by-step process on how she did it:
"Last year, in November 2014, when I started my TOEFL preparation, I discovered a bunch of NoteFull Speaking and Writing videos on YouTube, which I found extremely useful among other videos. My first impression was this is the only site which will help me in getting my dream score very soon."
Vandana went through the videos and took advantage of our in-depth strategy in our self-study courses. She started off with our 3-Step Reading Mastery program, 12-Step Speaking Mastery program, and 12-Step Writing Mastery program. She really dug into the programs to make sure she would master all of the material for about 5 hours daily, 35 hours per week. She emailed us about her doubts and questions, which is all a part of the process for success.
Vandana realized that after reviewing the programs, she still needed some extra help. So she registered for tutoring, speaking reviews, and writing reviews. She took our advice to heart and actively tailored her study plan around it:
1. Firstly, I used to get up early in the morning and practice 5 to 8 independent speaking questions as advised my Mathew.
2. Secondly, I used to practice out loud reading lectures for 20 minutes as advised by Mathew. Through reviews, I came to know that my clarity, pronunciation and fluency were not good.
3. Next, I used to practice questions 3, 4, 5 and 6 for 30 minutes following the structure provided by the NoteFull team.
4. Next, I used to practice note-taking of 4 lectures as advised by Mathew in one of the reviews. This helped in improving my note-taking ability.
5. Next, I used to practice reading, listening and writing using strategies provided by the Notefull team and their Wednesday videos.
6. Lastly, I used to practice some speaking questions in Starbucks to overcome my conciseness in a noisy environment.
After receiving sessions and feedback, Vandana really felt that she got the guidance she needed. She felt that "it was a great help provided by the NoteFull team, especially Mathew and Joseph. They helped in improving the following:
2. Clarity, fluency, and pronunciation.
3. How to connect examples with reasons in Questions 1 and 2.
4. How to connect the conclusion with topic in Questions 4 and 6. "
How to build on your little successes
Vandana did struggle at the start just like you, but she built upon each little success along the way. She went through tutoring and reviews feeling encouraged. She sometimes did well and other times needed a little more work, but she built her own template of success by working closely with each member of the NoteFull team to finally achieve her dream:
Reading: 24; Listening: 26; Speaking: 27; Writing 28
Vandana now can "feel relaxed and look forward to [her] next step towards [her] Physical Therapy license."
Some final points about YOUR future success from Vandana
"I just want to conclude by saying 'Never, never give up until you achieve your goals as hard work definitely pays, pays and pays.' I want every student to follow NoteFull strategy blindly if they want to get their dream score. Kudos to the NoteFull Team for your guidance, help and motivation!"
How to Become the Next Student of the Month back to top
If you think that you have what it takes to become NoteFull's next Student of the Month, please send us an email with your story of success to SuccessStories@NoteFull.com.
We look forward to receiving your success story. Whether you're working with an ESL or TOEFL system or through our Free TOEFL Course, we have seen your commitment to greatness and look forward to rewarding you for your hard work next month!
As Student of the Month, you will be interviewed by NoteFull and profiled on this page.
This is a great opportunity for you to inspire others with your story or just brag about your success. And just as you're reading this now, know that your story will continue to inspire others towards success for years to come.
Also, every Student of the Month receives a coveted NoteFull t-shirt! Wear it with pride when you get it because you deserve it.